Sunday, July 29, 2012

Latest report about the economic impact of 'open source' on small & mid-size businesses

I ran across this recent report entitled "Economic Impact of Open Source on Small Business: A Case Study" and thought you might also find it of interest. It was written by Mike Hendrickson, Roger Magoulas, Tim O'Reilly and released in July 2012. You can download this free report at

According to this 2012 report on the impact of open source on small and mid-size businesses, there is no question that open source software has had a profound economic impact on them. The report also states that mega-companies like "Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter are built on open source platforms. All of them run on Linux, make heavy use of open source databases and languages, and contribute to the open source communities they rely on."

Because they mix 'open source' components with proprietary software, it is difficult to apportion the value of the 'Open Source' databases, programming languages, tools and Web software infrastructure in creating the success of these innovative companies of the 21st century. However,  according to this recent report, Google had 2011 revenues of $37.9 billion and market capitalization of $189 billion. Facebook had 2011 revenues of $3.8 billion and market cap of $82 billion, and Amazon had 2011 revenues of $51 billion and a market cap of $103 billion.

Some other interesting findings presented in this report on the economic impact of open source on small and mid-size business include:
  • 75% of customers build their own site using simple sitebuilder tools. Another 6% have it built by a family member. Only 13% use professional web developers.
  • The majority of the websites are informational; only 14% have an online store (including non-profits that take donations online).
  • Nearly 20% of businesses in the survey say they derive more than 50% of their revenue from their website.
  • The majority of hosted businesses are very small. Only 15% have revenues in excess of $50,000/year, yet collectively, it is believed these businesses represent a trillion dollars of economic output.

Links to many other free studies, reports, and publications about open source and eHealth can also be accessed or downloaded from Open Health News (OHN) at

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